STEVE SPRAY

Indianola | Inducted 2009 | Category: Professional/Amateur Golfer

Additional Highlights/ Honors

  • 1967     Elected to NAIA Hall of Fame
  • 1984     Charter Member Eastern New Mexico University Hall of Honor
  • 2006     Inducted into the Gateway PGA Section Hall of Fame
  • 9-time qualifier for Club Professional Championship
  • 5-time winner of Gateway PGA Club Professional Championship Qualifier
  • Played in 3 Masters Tournaments
  • Played in 7 U.S. Opens, Finished 5th in 1968

Steve Spray displayed an incredible talent for the game as both Amateur and Professional player and had success no matter where his playing career took him.

A native of Indianola, Iowa, Spray began his amateur career with a win in the 1958 Iowa Junior Amateur and gained national fame by winning the 1959 Western Junior.  For college he went south to Eastern New Mexico University and won individual National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Championships in 1962 and 1963. Spray won a total of five of Iowa’s designated majors and was the Iowa Player of the Year in 1962 & 1963.  His wins included the 1963 Iowa Amateur, 1962 Northwest Amateur, 1962 & ’63 Central States Amateur, and the 1963 Tournament of Champions.  Spray also continued to make his mark on the national scene with quarterfinal appearances in the 1960 and 1963 U.S. Amateur.  After these accomplishments as an amateur, Spray decided to test his skills at the professional level.

He won the 1966 Waterloo Open, the 1972 Herman Sani and also notched wins at the New Mexico and Arizona Opens in 1973. 

Spray competed with notable success for several years on the PGA Tour highlighted by his win in the 1969 San Francisco Open and  a fifth place finish in the 1968 U. S. Open, won by Lee Trevino at Oak Hill in Rochester, N.Y.  During his PGA Tour career Spray appeared in three Masters, seven U.S. Opens and six PGA Championships.  

In 1976, Spray accepted the position of Head Professional at St. Louis Country Club where he shared his passion for golf for many years.  While serving as a club professional he continued his impressive playing career winning Gateway Section PGA Championships in 1977 & 1979, as well as 1984 Gateway Section PGA Player of the Year. He has qualified for the National Club Pro Championship nine times

Spray served as Gateway Section President in 1993-94 and is a member of the Gateway PGA Section Hall of Fame.  Additional honors he has received include membership in the NAIA Hall of Fame and the Eastern New Mexico University Hall of Honor.

Career Highlights

Amateur Highlights

  • 1958     Iowa Junior Amateur Champion
  • 1959     Western Junior Amateur Champion
  • 1962     Northwest Amateur Champion 
  • 1962 & 1963     Iowa Player of the Year
  • 1962 & 1963     Central States Champion
  • 1963     Iowa Amateur Champion
  • 1963     Won the Tournament of Champions  
  • U.S. Amateur Quarterfinals in the 1960 U.S. Amateur at St. Louis Country Club and the 1963 U.S. Amateur at Wakonda Club in Des Moines.
  • College at Eastern New Mexico University – NAIA All American, won the individual titles at the NAIA National Tournament in 1962 and 1963.

Professional Highlights

  • 1964     Iowa Open Champion 
  • 1966     Waterloo Open (Pro) Champion
  • 1969     San Francisco Open Champion, as a member of the PGA Tour
  • 1972     Herman Sani Champion
  • 1973     Arizona Open and New Mexico Open Champion
  • 1977 & 1979     Gateway PGA Section Champion   
  • 1978     T-17 in  Club Professional Championship
  • 1984     Gateway PGA Player of the Year
  • Played in 6 PGA Championships
  • Held the U.S. Open Record for low back nine holes, with a 30, for 27 years
  • Played in 3 Senior U.S. Opens
  • Played in 4 Senior PGA Championships
  • Accepted the Position of head golf professional at St. Louis Country Club in 1976
  • Served as Gateway Section President 1993-1994
  • T-14 in 1991 Senior Club Professional Championship
  • T-37 in 1997 Senior Club Professional Championship
  • T-27 in 1998 Senior Club Professional Championship
  • T-37 in 1999 Senior Club Professional Championship
  • T-29 in 2000 Senior Club Professional Championship
  • Bermuda Goodwill Pro-Am Individual Champion in 1977, 1982, 1983, 1988
On the cover of Golf World Magazine at start of 1969 season.
Winning San Francisco Open
On tour - big hat
Steve Spray during the 57th Senior PGA Championship held at PGA National Golf Club in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Thursday, April 18, 1996. (photograph by The PGA of America).
Steve at SLCC
Steve was the 2nd Herman Sani Scholar in 1959. Here with fellow PGA Professional Paul Leahy. Paul was a Sani Scholar in 1984.
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